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The sliding roof on a 2009 Toyota Venza is not functioning correctly, with the following symptoms:

  1. There is a "Moon Roof Open" message on the center display every time the driver's door is opened, even though the roof is closed.
  2. The roof opens only half way.
  3. Closing automatically does not work properly. When the roof reaches the closed position, it automatically retracts. Closing requires pressing the close button little by little until the roof is closed and not pressing again otherwise it will retract.
  4. The tilt up / down buttons do not work at all.

Ideas for diagnosis and potential solutions:

  1. Check that relevant fuses (S/ROOF and ECU IG NO. 1) are present and not blown.
  2. Initialize / calibrate the sliding roof so that the motor/ECU learns the open and close positions. Required when battery is changed or disconnected, which has been the case on this vehicle.
  3. Bypass the switch by shorting pins at the sliding roof ECU.
  4. Mechanically calibrate the sliding roof positions.

The fuses are present and check out fine with continuity tests.

The next thought was to perform an initialization / calibration, as per the service manual: http://www.tovenza.com/initialization-1827.html Unfortunately that requires the tilt down button, which does not seem to be working at all.

To get around and potentially identify a switch problem, I tried working directly with the sliding roof ECU by shorting the ECU's wiring harness pins to body ground based on the pinouts: http://www.tovenza.com/sliding_roof_does_not_move_by_operating_sliding_roof_control_switch-1837.html Shorting pins 7 and 9 works to open and close, but pins 8 and 10 (tilt down and up) do nothing. So I am still unable to run the initialization routine.

Another thought is to open the sliding roof electrically as far as it will go, then turn off the ignition, unbolt the roof motor and gear, and manually set the roof to the fully open position. The hope is that this would result in the physical and electronic positions coinciding, which might solve the first three symptoms. Could this work or is it likely to mess things up further?

Any (other) ideas on a cheap DIY fix for this sliding roof?

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Mechanically calibrating the sliding roof position worked.

I opened the sliding roof electrically as far as possible, then turned off the ignition, removed the map light console, removed three bolts and a metal support bracket, then dropped down the roof motor and ECU assembly, making sure the motor gears did not move. Then I physically pushed the roof fully open. Upon reassembling, everything works correctly.

All symptoms are resolved. There is no more "moon roof open" message when the roof is closed, the roof opens fully electrically, closing works properly and does not reverse direction, and the tilt up/down buttons work.

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